Have you ever wanted to go to a hip-hop show, but you’re stuck with that one friend who doesn’t know anything about hip-hop? Obviously the best course of action is to do what Carrie does in this recently released Portlandia sketch: Go over the entire history of hip-hop and make your friend cram before the performance as if it were a college final. Fred tries his best here, from naming Wu Tang Clan(g) members (“Old Dirty…Black Man?”), trying to grasp the impact of hip-hop (“this is GRAMMY WINNING MUSIC”) and attempting to make sense of skits on albums (“oh it sounds like a play is going on!”). It’s goofy, but it leads up to an even more satisfying payoff, something I wish would be a staple of every hip-hop show. Of course in reality Armisen knows his stuff extremely well, as anyone who remembers his Rachel Ray endorsement of Death Grips can tell you. Watch the sketch below and check out a clip of the earliest version of the show when it premiered on Stereogum in 2007 here.
Portlandia airs Thursdays at 10/9C on IFC.